Watch Kids' Reviews of
NESTLING, THE

What to know: Beautiful and homeful in a delicate way.
NESTLING, THE is in the KIDS FIRST! Film Festival - it may not be a regular, endorsed title
Recommended age 8-18
12 minutes
VIDEO
CHRISTIANE HITZEMANN
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NESTLING, THE cover image
The Nestling almost made me cry. It's beautiful and hopeful in a way a film delicately and well made only can be. The story completely engaged me, drawing me into the mind of the main character, a young girl, in a way that felt both honest and pleasant. The clever use of symbolism and subtext that the film presents drew me in deeper. This is really an extraordinary film and I highly recommend it.

The story follows a young girl, Ela, adjusting to her mother's return from a hospital where she was being treated for cancer.

The story works well for several reasons. It builds carefully, establishing later events in the very beginning of the film. The plot fascinated me, leaving just enough questions to keep me guessing, but not enough so I was confused. Finally, every event burns with hopefulness and a lightness that keeps the story from getting too dark.

The camera work has a soft look to it, giving the film a calm, serene feel. This feeling makes certain moments in the film that were upsetting feel distinctly less worrisome. For instance, Ela accidentally ends up killing the tiny bird she's caring for. The scene when she discovers the body is upsetting, but the way we view it makes it less distressing. One of my favorite shots is the opening one, a close-up of the little bird. The entire shot rapidly establishes important facts for the story and is incredibly pretty, especially the way it slowly zooms out and shows the rest of the bird and its nest.

There is one major set at the Ela's pastel house. I love this set. It is very detailed, from how the cabinets are constructed, to how its objects are built to fit into the setting. One of my favorite details is how the little bird's nest is visible during the climatic argument of the movie. This detail gives a calm feeling to the film. There are three main characters in the film - Ela (young girl), her mother and her grandmother. All three are exceptionally well acted, especially Ela Aktepe who plays the young girl Ela and who comes across as both fragile and strong, tired and awake; and scared, but fearless. The screenplay is filled with symbolism, and beautifully presented. My favorite part of the film occurs when Ela, after discovering her bird is dead, goes to her mother and grandmother and tells them the little bird flew away. For me, this scene is exceptionally well acted, and also well-written. It is also such an unexpected moment that I could not stop watching after.

The film's message is that even if life throws you curveballs, it is always best to keep your head up.

I give The Nestling 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It has an important message and is well written and acted, however it does address the topic of death and there is a pretty graphic image of a dead bird. The dialogue is in German with English subtitles. Reviewed by Sandrine A., KIDS FIRST!

The Nestling almost made me cry. It's beautiful and hopeful in a way a film delicately and well made only can be. The story completely engaged me, drawing me into the mind of the main character, a young girl, in a way that felt both honest and pleasant. The clever use of symbolism and subtext that the film presents drew me in deeper. This is really an extraordinary film and I highly recommend it.

The story follows a young girl, Ela, adjusting to her mother's return from a hospital where she was being treated for cancer.

The story works well for several reasons. It builds carefully, establishing later events in the very beginning of the film. The plot fascinated me, leaving just enough questions to keep me guessing, but not enough so I was confused. Finally, every event burns with hopefulness and a lightness that keeps the story from getting too dark.

The camera work has a soft look to it, giving the film a calm, serene feel. This feeling makes certain moments in the film that were upsetting feel distinctly less worrisome. For instance, Ela accidentally ends up killing the tiny bird she's caring for. The scene when she discovers the body is upsetting, but the way we view it makes it less distressing. One of my favorite shots is the opening one, a close-up of the little bird. The entire shot rapidly establishes important facts for the story and is incredibly pretty, especially the way it slowly zooms out and shows the rest of the bird and its nest.

There is one major set at the Ela's pastel house. I love this set. It is very detailed, from how the cabinets are constructed, to how its objects are built to fit into the setting. One of my favorite details is how the little bird's nest is visible during the climatic argument of the movie. This detail gives a calm feeling to the film. There are three main characters in the film - Ela (young girl), her mother and her grandmother. All three are exceptionally well acted, especially Ela Aktepe who plays the young girl Ela and who comes across as both fragile and strong, tired and awake; and scared, but fearless. The screenplay is filled with symbolism, and beautifully presented. My favorite part of the film occurs when Ela, after discovering her bird is dead, goes to her mother and grandmother and tells them the little bird flew away. For me, this scene is exceptionally well acted, and also well-written. It is also such an unexpected moment that I could not stop watching after.

The film's message is that even if life throws you curveballs, it is always best to keep your head up.

I give The Nestling 5 out of 5 stars and recommend it for ages 8 to 18, plus adults. It has an important message and is well written and acted, however it does address the topic of death and there is a pretty graphic image of a dead bird. The dialogue is in German with English subtitles. Reviewed by Sandrine A., KIDS FIRST!

While struggling with her grandmother about the household lead, a young girl has to cope with her mother's seemingly fatal illness: cancer.
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